Scalable, cloud-native solutions like Azure Sentinel help security teams streamline security operations in cloud environments.
In this first of a two-part blog series, we explore the challenges businesses face when detecting and responding to cyber threats and attacks, and how these challenges can be addressed by leveraging Microsoft Azure Sentinel.
A security information and event management (SIEM) solution collects security data from across organizational infrastructure, host systems, applications, networks, and security devices. This makes it a one-stop solution for seeing all security data across the organization. SIEM solutions can:
- Analyze data for potential threats, vulnerabilities, and attack patterns, then alert other security controls to stop the progress of potential attacks
- Detect and stop cyber attacks
- Leverage machine learning (ML) and deep learning techniques to use data collected from previous events to improve the accuracy of threat prediction
SIEM tools are made up of two parts. A security event manager collects data from real-time events such as failed login attempts and attempted log tampering, and a security information manager is responsible for maintaining and analyzing data. long-term data.
A security orchestration and automated response (SOAR) solution helps IT administrators and security teams respond to alerts based on their priority. It can also help orchestrate and automate mundane and time-consuming manual activities. SOAR solutions can:
- Automate investigative workflows so security teams have more time for important and skill-based tasks
- Automatically respond and take action against alerts
The terms SIEM and SOAR are often used interchangeably, but it is important to understand the differences in their functionality, as well as why using the two tools together provides an in-depth collective defense strategy against cyber threats and threats. attacks.
Disadvantages of traditional SIEM and SOAR solutions
While traditional SIEM and SOAR solutions improve efficiency by helping teams identify and mitigate vulnerabilities, a few shortcomings should be noted:
- SIEM and SOAR solutions are traditionally designed to function as separate tools.
- Most traditional SIEM and SOAR solutions cannot support deep cloud management and monitoring.
- The cost of integrating a SIEM solution to cover your entire infrastructure can be high. Additionally, multiple SIEM solutions may be required to collect all network and application data logs and telemetry details.
- Not all traditional SIEM and SOAR solutions are designed to scale to support ever-growing logging, monitoring, threat detection, and response needs.
- The configuration and management of these solutions require specific skills and costs.
Azure Sentinel is a scalable, cloud-native SIEM and SOAR solution. Azure Sentinel entered the race in 2019 and was adopted thanks to its ability to support the ever-growing needs of corporate customers. Sentinel can collect and analyze data from multiple data sources, including tenants and subscriptions Azure Cloud, Office365, and other public cloud service providers, as well as on-premises environments, making it a single solution. for the entire digital domain. Sentinel provides an overview of assets across the organization. And it leverages machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) techniques for threat analysis and proactive threat research, blocking potential threats that can turn into attacks.
Benefits of Azure Sentinel
The advantages of Azure Sentinel over traditional solutions are:
- Cost. Pay as you go with just $ 2.46 per GB of data analyzed by Azure Sentinel. There are no upfront costs incurred to integrate Sentinel, which eliminates the expense and configuration of traditional SIEM hardware tools.
- Scalability. Designed to support per-GB pricing, Azure Sentinel dynamically evolves to accommodate changes in workload or compliance requirements.
- Ease of use. Setup is as easy as a few clicks for cloud and on-premises environments.
- The integration. Sentinel easily integrates with current SIEM and SOAR solutions, providing a complete view of security in your digital space.
- SIEM and SOAR together. Today’s complex environments need the combination of technologies that SIEM and SOAR products provide when used together.
- Capacity expansion. Microsoft is continuously expanding the capabilities of Sentinel, making it a leading cybersecurity solution for SIEM and SOAR.
Integrating Azure Sentinel into your cloud environment
The benefits of integrating Sentinel into your environment are:
- Connect all data sources. Azure Sentinel can collect data from connectors like AAD, Microsoft 365 Defender, Cloud App Security, and Microsoft Azure AD, to name a few. It also has built-in connectors to extend the security of non-MS solutions such as Okta SSO and Qualys VM.
- Exercise books. Workbooks allow users to monitor data collected from data sources. Azure Sentinel provides default workbook models that can be leveraged to visualize data. It also provides custom workbooks.
- Analytic. Sentinel’s analytics capabilities can combine alerts into actionable incidents. It uses machine learning to map network behavior and identify anomalies between resources in an environment. It also analyzes low priority alerts that may become high priority incidents.
- Automation and orchestration of security. Azure Sentinel playbooks are used to automate and orchestrate incident response scenarios. Playbooks can be created using multiple built-in connectors for Jira, ServiceNow, Teams, Slack, and more.
- Threat hunt. Azure Sentinel enables security analysts to find and query data on potential threats and anomalies not detected by security applications. Additionally, Sentinel provides integrated queries developed by Microsoft security researchers on an ongoing basis, enabling security analysts to detect potential security threats.
In this article, we explored the features and capabilities of Azure Sentinel, including its advantages over traditional SIEM and SOAR solutions. In Part 2 of this blog series, we’ll discuss some use cases of Azure Sentinel, including how it leverages its ML and AI techniques to uncover threats in your environment, alert administrators, and orchestrates the tasks.